Car accidents with Malaysian vehicles are an insurance claim nightmare
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Car Insurance Claims against foreign vehicles is a logistical nightmare. From police reports, claim documentation and contacting the General Insurance Association of Singapore, get ready to be inconvenienced.

Category: Car Ownership Advice

Filing a car insurance claim against a Malaysian vehicle is very different compared to claiming against a Singaporean-registered one.

It becomes more complicated because you're claiming against a car insurance policy from another jurisdiction in another country.

These are the steps you should take:
  • Gather all necessary information
  • Make a police report and seeking help
  • Inform your insurer within 24 hours
  • Wait for the outcome
  • Seek help from the higher authorities 
  • Alternative ways of seeking redress

Gather all necessary information

Take down all the essential information and remember to take photos of everything
Acquire evidence to help your claim. You'll need:
  • Particulars of the drivers involved
  • Registration numbers of vehicles involved
  • Photos of the accident and the damaged vehicle(s)
Ever wondered what's taking so long to get your claims? It could be poorly documented evidence, among other important steps.
Make a police report and seeking help

Report the accident to the police, especially if you're claiming against a foreign vehicle. If the police detect foul play, they will notify the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA) to prevent the foreign vehicle from leaving the country.

If there are any injured parties at the accident site, call an ambulance immediately (995). Here are five crucial steps on handling a car accident.

Ring up your insurer and seek assistance, if needed. FWD and Aviva car insurance have 24-hour emergency hotlines available. While some insurers offer it for free, others like Budget Direct car insurance charge a fee – it depends on your policy coverage.
Inform your insurer within 24 hours

Even if you've no intentions of claiming against your policy, report the accident to your insurer. Otherwise, you're at risk of certain consequences like losing your No-Claims Discount (NCD).

FWD, AIG and Budget Direct car insurance requires policyholders to report all accidents within 24 hours or by the next working day. If you make a late report, NTUC Income deducts 10% off your NCD from your policy.

Plus, when you eventually decide to claim against your car insurance policy, your insurer won't reject your claim on the basis that you delayed the report. Here are four other common car insurance claim mistakes to avoid.
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Contacting the Malaysian Insurer

Our friends across the border sure make it hard to claim against their vehicles
You need to contact the Malaysian car insurer directly. Local workshops and insurers cannot make cross-border claims for you. Also, due to a High Court Ruling, insurers of Malaysian-registered vehicles involved in accidents in Singapore are not at liberty to pay you any money.

Its recommended that you reach them using registered mail. You'll need:
  • A photocopy of your vehicle registration card, your identity card, your Certificate of Insurance, cover note or policy schedule
  • Police report (Photocopy both reports and exchange them within 24 hours)
  • If available, the result of the police investigation, a police sketch plan and key
  • An adjuster's report (With original photos)
  • Proof of losses incurred
  • Other bills and expenses incurred as a result of the accident (e.g. car rental, medical bills)
  • Clear photos of the damages on the vehicles involved
  • The Malaysian vehicle's registration number, insurance certificate and road tax disc (Malaysian insurers require photographic evidence of the related party's involvement)
Then you wait. Time moves at a different pace in Malaysia.
Seek help from the higher authorities

If you've exhausted the above options and you're still hellbent on claiming against Malaysian insurers, you may contact:

General Insurance Association of Singapore
Address: 180 Cecil Street #07-02, Bangkok Bank Building S(069546)
Hotline: 6221 8788

Or its Malaysian counterpart:

Persatuan Insuran Am Malaysia (PIAM)
Address: 150 Jalan Tun Sambanthan, 3rd Floor, Wisma Piam, Kuala Lumpur Malaysia (50470)
Hotline: 03 2274 7399
Alternatively, you can claim against your insurer

Claim against your insurer if your liability falls below 20% (if you have comprehensive insurance) or try to settle privately
This is where comprehensive car insurance comes in handy. You're not at risk of losing your NCD if your liability is 20% or less.

Consider purchasing a comprehensive car insurance policy as a precautionary measure. These are some of the best car insurance policies for 2020.
Or a private settlement

Private settlement works with cooperative parties who are willing to exchange particulars and document the private settlement terms. Google "Private settlement forms", and you'll find some usable templates.

If all fails, you're out of luck. You can, file a lawsuit if you're willing to pay for the legal fees.

Troublesome right? The best advice? Stay away from foreign vehicles.
Here are some car insurance-related articles that might interest you

Ultimate Guide to Car Insurance in Singapore

All you need to know about NCD for car insurance

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*This article was updated by Alexandra Cheung on 26/10/20

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